Indian Businesses Strengthen UK Ties With New Bilateral Agreement


On Thursday 2nd July in central London the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) and the UK India Business Council (UKIBC) jointly signed a new bilateral agreement on to further strengthen UK-India trade and establish a stronger relationship between investors and companies. The event also coincided with the launch of the UK Chapter of ASSOCHAM.

With India set to overtake China as the fastest growing economy in the world in 2016, this new roadmap aims to promote trade delegations, facilitate cross-border business relations, and actively identify sectors and projects of mutual interest for both Indian and UK businesses to invest in. At the signing event, a special report by ASSOCHAM, in association with YES Bank, titled ‘Make in India – Pressing The Pedal’ was published, highlighting the investment-return potential for UK investors and companies. Key findings of the report include:

  • India’s exports have the potential to rise by $64bn (£40.6bn) annually, if India captures a 20% share of the low-end exports where China is losing advantage
  • A reduction in India’s manufacturing imports from $127bn in 2014 to $40-50bn is possible within the next five years
  • India is likely to overtake China as the fastest growing economy in 2016, and is predicted to overtake China as the world’s largest cotton producer

Notably, the report underlined the UK’s prominent position as the fourth largest FDI contributor to India, so the UK is set to benefit from China’s energised export drive. The new roadmap will maximise opportunities for UK businesses and harness India’s potential especially in the fields of manufacturing, infrastructure, and renewable energy, described as ‘boom sectors’ during the speeches.

ASSOCHAM President Rana Kapoor welcoming the signing of the agreement.

Welcoming the signing of the agreement and the launch of a UK base for the Indian chambers, ASSOCHAM President Mr. Rana Kapoor stated:

“India’s potential manufacturing and export-driven growth, key pillars of the Indian government’s Make in India campaign, offers a fantastic opportunity to UK investors and companies.  As a hub for trade to the European continent, London is an excellent platform for new relationships to be built and we hope the strengthening of this corridor will improve the ease of doing business and provide British and Indian companies, especially in the SME sector, a new era of cross-border cooperation. India is a growth story, and this story is set to continue”

The event also saw keynote speeches from leading entrepreneur and industrialist Mr. G.P. Hinduja, as well as from Mr. Michael Boyd, Managing Director, UKTI Rt. Hon. Patricia Hewitt, Chair, UK India Business Council and Baroness Sandip Verma, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for International Development, UK Government.

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